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Young woman holding sunflowers with more UUs in background at 2014 People's Climate March in New York City.

UUs at the 2014 People's Climate March in New York City

Environmental Justice

All life is interconnected. From the forest to the sea to humanity itself, each thread of being is woven into a single fabric of existence. We embrace nature’s beauty and are in awe of its power. We care for our environment so that it may sustain life for generations to come, an especially important responsibility because those who are most impacted by environmental destruction are often those with the least power. Creating a sustainable way of life is central to our view of a just and compassionate world.

What We Are Doing

  • Commit2Respond
    We are facing a climate crisis. Commit2Respond is a campaign of faith and conscience for climate justice, led by Unitarian Universalist (UU) organizations. Kicked off in September 2014 with the People’s Climate March, it continued with the first-ever Climate Justice Month from March 22-April 22 and a sacred public witness in solidarity with Native and First Nations peoples in Portland, OR, June 27. Join Commit2Respond to add your voice, get connected, and increase our collective impact.
  • Green Sanctuary Program
    Our congregations demonstrate their commitment to environmental justice by aligning their values with their actions through becoming certified Green Sanctuaries. For 15 years the Green Sanctuary program has helped more than 230 UU congregations live out this commitment through spiritual connection, education, sustainable living, and social justice. Newly updated since 2012!
  • Ethical Eating
    We recognize the moral consequences of our food choices and pay attention to the impact of our involvement in the food system. Starting in 2011, UUs across the country committed to engage with eating as an ethical issue. Learn more through the ethical eating study guide and worship resources.  
  • Divestment and Socially-Responsible Investment
    In 2014, Unitarian Universalists became one of the first religious groups to commit our financial investments to environmental justice. We have called on our denomination, our congregations, and our individual members to engage with how investments can be socially responsible, using available resources.

Worship, Learn, and Live Your Faith

Worship

Education

  • Resource Guide for the 2006 "Threat of Global Warming/Climate Change" Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Statement of Conscience
  • Demonstrating Our Values through Eating (DOVE): a free food education curriculum written for Unitarian Universalists. The six-week course incorporates video, discussion, cooking sessions, and supplementary materials on themes of health, justice, compassion and sustainability.
  • "Our Place in the Web of Life": Download this introductory curriculum designed by the Unitarian Universalist Ministry for Earth (UUMFE). In five sessions, the curriculum is a thorough introduction to environmental justice advocacy in a Unitarian Universalist context. Using highly-participatory techniques, the lesson plans take you through a journey exploring your values and the consequences of the choices you make
  • Climate Change Religious Education Curriculum: This curriculum has been developed by the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office (UU-UNO), and many of the solutions discussed are from the UN.

Stories

Partnership

Effective justice ministry depends on partnership, since climate change and environmental destruction touches everyone. UU partners for environmental justice work, beyond the Unitarian Universalist Association, include UU state advocacy networks, the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, the UU College of Social Justice, UU Ministry for Earth, and the UU United Nations Office Climate Change Task Force. UUs also form interfaith partnerships, such as with GreenFaith and Interfaith Power and Light.

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For more information contact socialjustice@uua.org.

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